Monday, January 31, 2005

Howard Dean Hates Republicans

Well, lookie here. Howard Dean at his finest:
"I hate the Republicans and everything they stand for, but I admire their discipline and their organization," the failed presidential hopeful told the crowd at the Roosevelt Hotel, where he and six other candidates spoke at the final DNC forum before the Feb. 12 vote for chairman.
So this is the favorite to become the next DNC Chairman?

Hillary, Hillary, Hillary

Mrs. Rodham-Clinton can't seem to stay off our radar screen. Yet another columnist comments about Hillary's dash to the center (and the Dem. nomination) - and it will hardly be the last. The good thing about Hillary's aim to be portrayed as a centrist by 2008 is that there will be a vast amount of information already out there calling her on all these flip-flops (might as well call them what they are) at the time of her pseudo-evolution. That way, a major re-positioning won't go unnoticed, unlike Dennis Kucinich's flip-flop from being a pro-lifer in his early days in Congress to being an abortion rights advocate while a presidential candidate. On second thought, that may have gone unnoticed because Kucinich was never relevant.

And You Thought America Had Problems with Unemployment...

A sad state of affairs.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

High Praise for Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton!

Yes, you read that right. In fact, you may never read it again on this page. But yes, it's genuine. Drudge linked to this New York Times story in which Hillary seems to reach out to pro-lifers by stating a desire to reduce the number of "unwanted pregnancies." The article, in part:
While she acknowledged in her address today that Americans have "deeply held differences" over abortion rights, Mrs. Clinton told the annual conference of the Family Planning Advocates of New York State, "I for one respect those who believe with all their heart and conscience that there are no circumstances under which abortion should be available."

In addition to her description of abortion as a "tragic choice" for many," Mrs. Clinton said that faith and organized religion were the "primary" reasons that teenagers abstain from sexual relations, and reminded the audience that during the 1990's, she promoted "teen celibacy" as a way to reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies.

"The fact is, the best way to reduce the number of abortions is to reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies in the first place," Mrs. Clinton said.

Mrs. Clinton also called today for the Bush administration, religious groups, supporters and opponents of abortion rights and others to look beyond the abortion rights divide and form a broad alliance on other issues that she suggested as less incendiary: sex-education programs for teenagers that included abstinence education, emergency contraception for women who have recently had unprotected intercourse, and family planning.
First, to my friends on the right: I know this is little more than positioning for her 2008 presidential bid (and quite transparent at that, when coupled with all her recent talk about her faith). However, to paraphrase what my co-blogger Josh once told me, why does it matter what the motivation is as long as the policy is correct?

That brings me to the merits of her proposal. In short, I think it's great. No matter what side of the coin one falls on with regards to the abortion issue, I cannot see how anyone would be opposed to there being a fewer number of abortions performed. If she and others actually commit to something like this, neither the pro-life or the pro-choice side loses. I would hope that those on the pro-choice side view the practice and practitioners of abortion somewhat like police officers: they have jobs because there exists a problem, but ideally their job function would not be necessary at all.

I thought of something similar about a year ago. I was having a discussion about abortion with a liberal girl from my section that I was dating (who shall remain nameless!), and I suggested to her that I would like to see a broad coalition of both pro-life and pro-choice groups getting together and working toward reducing the number of abortions performed through programs, some like the ones Hillary mentioned, that would reduce the frequency at which abortions were performed. She seemed startled, and even angry (mostly angry), that I could even conceive of something like that. It was obvious that it was an idea that had never even entered her mind, since she was instead filled with zeal for protecting abortion rights. I wonder what she would say in response to Hillary's remarks. She's already heard it once before.

P.S. - "I Left My Heart in San Francisco" was Tony Bennett's song, not Sinatra's.

Monday, January 24, 2005

San Franciso seeks handgun ban

A member of the City Bd of Supervisors (akin to City Council), who hails from the Washington area, said it's unfair to compare the gun ban that failed to curb long-term crime rates in Washington D.C. (Which has a murder rate of 44 victims per 100,000 residents. San Fran, by contrast is at 9.2/100,000.) The district faces greater poverty, unemployment and "serious social issues that I wouldn't expect the majority of pro-gun America to understand," said the Board member.

The story can be found here.

Sing it Frank--I left my bleeding heart in San Franciso.

Sunday, January 16, 2005

Business as Usual in the City of Chicago

The three articles from the Chicago Sun-Times on this page merely expose the latest in how business is conducted in the City of Chicago. It also provides an example of how farcical the practice of doling out "minority-owned business" contracts is.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005


This link is to a wild story. Our own 8th Circuit Court of Appeals is still doing some good work.

The man was arrested and searched in the public restroom. It seems that despite the 14th Amendment rights that his lawyer suggests, any time an adult male and female go into a restroom together and won't come out, police may enter upon being summoned to a suspicious situation. After all, public indecency is not yet a Fundamental right.

Monday, January 10, 2005

Volokh is usually not known to bleed from the chest cavity

Said Euguene Volokh on his blog:

My Heart Bleeds for This Fellow, who is suing NBC over a Fear Factor episode. Reuters reports (thanks to How Appealing for the pointer) that In a handwritten four-page lawsuit filed in federal court in Cleveland on Tuesday [demanding $2.5 million in damages], paralegal Austin Aitken said, "To have the individuals on the show eat (yes) and drink dead rats was crazy and from a viewer's point of view made me throw-up as well an another in the house at the same time."

His suit added, "NBC is sending the wrong message to its TV watchers that cash can make or have people do just about anything beyond reasoning (sic) and in most cases against their will."
He said the show caused his blood pressure to rise so high that he became dizzy and light-headed, and when he ran away to his room, he bumped his head into the doorway.

"In a brief telephone interview with Reuters, Aitken said, 'I am not at liberty to discuss the complaint unless it is a paid-interview situation.'"

I would add, what was the guy thinking? He is a paralegal for goodness sake! Surely he got some legal training about proximate cause, and generally not being a moron.

Sunday, January 02, 2005

Justice Ginsburg's Views on the Age of Consent

Why not start the new year with some controversy? This post by Eugene Volokh was made a few days ago, but is quite noteworthy. It's about Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg possibly advocating that the age of consent be lowered to 12 years of age. Yes, 12 years of age. Volokh adds fine commentary, so not much more is needed on my end to shock the conscience.

Happy New Year

Well, time to get back to adding new content to the site. First up, a bit about file-sharing from Wired via the Volokh Conspiracy. As of this writing, there seems to be some good discussion in the comments section of the Volokh post.